From Brian Snarr: I read Don't Shoot the Dog many years ago and became an immediate fan. It has helped tremendously with training and having fun with our two dogs and one cat. I was also very interested in sections that talked about dealing with people. As a teacher, I implemented some positive reward systems in my classroom. It has been great!
People interested in clicker training often ask how we might fit this approach into the school system: not the clicker per se, but the whole technology. Actually the behavioral scientists have been working on this for a long time. An exchange on the topic appeared on the ARF listserv, run by graduate students of the Department of Behavior Analysis at the University of North Texas. Here are some highlights.
Some children of eight or nine grasp the principles the moment they are exposed to them, and can go right to work; having no preconceptions they catch on a lot quicker than adults sometimes. But I think three is a bit too young for the insight into cause and effect that clicker training takes. By all means she can click her stuffed animals or pretend animals; but I'd suggest that with the cat and the dog she be allowed to click and give treats, three or four treats per animal, once a day, say. That will be clicker training, as far as she is concerned; she'll understand more about it as she gets older. Meanwhile the dog will incidentally learn to sit and hope for treats from her, and the cat might learn the same.